Military Search and Detection: How Bayes' Theorem can find SUNKEN TREASURE!

To get inside AVA, buzz Nile Geisinger at the door and I will come down and let you in. AVA has a nice chill room down stairs that we will be using. 

We will embark on a journey through time, as we discuss how applied mathematics became an important tool in our military's history.  Operations Research was a sub-field of mathematics created to optimize the effectiveness of anti-submarine depth charges.  Over the decades, the practice evolved into multiple applications requiring optimization problem solving, such as search pattern theory.

Part anecdotal and part mathematical, this presentation will review various "Lost at Sea Stories" that introduced Bayes' Theorem to the world.  We'll talk about various sunken submarines and even a lost H-Bomb.  The final scenario will tackle the most difficult search expedition of them all, the SS Central America: a vessel carrying over 15 tons of gold whose 1857 sinking caused the financial crisis, "The Panic of 1857."

Our mathematical analysis will involve an extensive use of Bayes' Theorem and how it applies to several probability maps (I'll bring handouts!).  We'll also talk about how the Navy has absorbed the philosophy of mathematics in both land, sea, and air due to its effectiveness over the decades.  It's a claim, but it's true.  Hope to see you guys there!

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  • A former member
    A former member

    The real world is over-rated. It seldom reaches the levels of awe and mystery of the "Ship of Gold."
    Question: I have read of controversy regarding Bayes Theorem as a means of transforming subjective impressions/evaluations/guesses/etc. into objective knowledge. What can go wrong, or how does one guarantee "convergence" if you will? It seems to work well, certainly in the examples given, but might it be philosophically suspect under some circumstances?

    November 18, 2013

  • tom h.

    What? Now we have the real world being presented to us at a math meetup. I think it was a marvelous presentation. And the fact that our presenter brought along knowledgeable friends who contributed was also a big plus ( at least I think that is what occurred ). We should have more like this. Thanks, Danny

    November 18, 2013

  • Ian

    Sorry I missed the meetup yesterday, everyone! I had the best intentions of showing, but I ran out of time this weekend. I'm bummed, because I really wanted to attend this one. See you guys next week!

    November 18, 2013

  • Danny C

    Nile, some of us are in the lobby. We couldnt reach you via callbox for some reason

    November 17, 2013

  • tom h.

    Danny "The Ship of Gold" is a wonderful book - but after reading it twice I gave it away.

    November 12, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Jigsaw Renaissance hackerspace has no events scheduled for Sunday. 815 Seattle blvd south, room112. I'll try to reserve it now.

    November 11, 2013

    • Nile

      Steve, I think we've found a place for now. I really do appreciate the help, though, and we can definitely look at Jigsaw Renaissance as a possible location in the new year.

      November 11, 2013

  • tom h.

    Ship of Gold. I have read it twice within the last 10 years by Gary Kinder - a Seattle lawyer who teaches legal writing to lawyers. I have attended one of his seminars.

    November 10, 2013

    • Danny C

      I actually never read it. Feel free to bring it!

      November 11, 2013

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